Custom Spook Made by T.H. Rinaldi

Oct 17, 1998

Custom Spook made by T.H. Rinaldi

The knife you see on this page is the custom Spook knife as made for me by knifemaker T. H.
Rinaldi. It is "7 3/4 long with a blade of "3 7/8. The blade is made of "5/32 thick BG42 and has a
satin finish. The handle is made from ebony. It has cost me no more than ($115,00 without
postage). Even with postage this knife was no more than ¦ 270,00 (Dutch Guilders), about the same
as one would pay over here for a deluxe Böker/Nealy Specialist. Not bad hé?!

This is in many ways a first for me: it is my first custom knife, it is my first small to medium
utility/defence fixed blade, it is my first Kydex sheath, my first multi-carry sheathing system, and my
first knife made of BG42 steel. I was first inspired to look for a knife like this by the discussions on
the knife forums on the daily carry of fixed blade knifes. I wanted to learn more about this and
decided to buy a small to medium fixed blade with a multi-carry sheathing system. I finely decided
to go for a custom version of the T.H. Rinaldi Spook because it looked good, had a full flat grind,
was made of stainless steel (I hate rust), and the maker had a good reputation on the forums. Below
the picture you will find what I think of this knife. As I have no other knife like it to compare it with,
this review is somewhat subjective. The only exception is the cutting test as I do have other knives
that cut.

As I mentioned above the blade is made of "5/32 thick BG42 and it has a satin finish. The finish is
nice and smooth. It has clippoint, a reverse curve edge and is flat ground from back of the blade to
the primary edge. The reverse curve brings with it the trade-off between more difficult sharpening
and (supposedly) more aggressive cutting. The thickness just behind the edge is about what you
would expect on a normal production knife; strong, but a bit to thick for my taste. I like this part to
be very thin, like a kitchen knife, because in my experience this will make it cut better. The primary
edge was finished at a total angle of between 45 and 50 degrees. I prefer this at a lower angel as
that makes is sharper and easier to sharpen on the Spyderco Sharpmaker (total angle of 40
degrees). After the knife arrived I sharpened it on the Sharpmaker to improve its performance a bit.

I have tested it in comparison with a resharpened Buck 110 and fount that where it came to cutting
performance they where about equal. Good, clean cutting. At the cost of strength and edge holding,
the performance could have been improved slightly by choosing the thinner (at "1/8) ATS34 stock
for the blade. As I wanted the (clamed) better edge holding of BG42 steel I have no problem with
the slightly greater thickness. I have not done any edge holding tests so the above statement is based
on tests by other people.

The handle consists of ebony slaps secured to the full tang. It is a relatively narrow handle design
which feel good in the hand, thanks partly to the well rounded and smoothly finished ebony, and
partly to the well thought out shape. The narrow handle allows for a functional integral guard. The
coil is wide enough for my index finger and helps with precision cuts.

It came complete with a Kydex multi-carry sheath system that includes two belt loops (one Kydex
one cloth), a clip, a ball chain and a piece of parachute cord. The sheath is well made end protects
the user from the knife and the knife from its surroundings. The sheath retains the knife well, is will
not fall out if carried inverted. The implements supplied with the sheath make it possible to secure
the knife is a large variety of places on the body. They all work very nicely, although if you would
want to carry this knife as a neck knife you should buy one with a lighter handle. This version can be
carried as a neck knife but is just a tat on the heavy side for constant carrying in this manner.

One of the reasons I chose Trace Rinaldi to make me my first custom knife were the favourable
comments made about him on the knife forums. These proved to be well founded, mr. Rinaldi
always responded quickly to my questions and kept me posted on the development of my knife. All
our communication was done by E-mail. You could very well say that without the internet I would
not have known of this knife and I would never have bought it.

All in all this is a very nice knife. The only change I would suggest is a thinner edge sharpened at a
lower angle. This knife is a bargain, and Trace Rinaldi a good knifemaker and an honest business
man. If you are looking for a quality small to medium utility/defence knife this one is worthy of you

You can find picture at:
Jan Dirk Wijbenga